My first stop on my trip through part of Southeast Asia is Bali, Indonesia! Despite only having been here for just over 24 hours, I feel like I’ve already experienced so much its crazy. I flew here from Brisbane yesterday and was greeted at the airport by a two hour customs line where I met some extremely friendly Aussies to pass the time with. My good friend met me outside of the airport (she flew here all the way from New York!) and we ventured around looking for a taxi. It definitely wasn’t hard considering the mobs of taxi drivers hawking prices at you “Taxi! Taxi!”
After an hour in our taxi we ended up at our beautiful little hotel: Kertiyasa Bungalow in Ubud. The staff is amazingly hospitable and helpful. The grounds are covered with beautiful plumeria trees, statues, and a nice little fountained pool. Entering our air conditioned room was sheer relief from the cloying heat outside. They also serve a complimentary breakfast which is always a plus!
We ended up getting dinner at a quaint Balinese restaurant in the nearby city center and I was so excited to see that many of the restaurants feature seating without chairs, just cushions where you can sit criss cross apple sauce. The extremely cheap prices don’t hurt either! It literally cost about 2 US dollars for a beautiful and healthy meal which is crazy to me.
Today, we walked through the Monkey Forest and both of us almost got our stuff stolen by monkeys. No kidding, they made a grab at Jackie’s iPhone and at papers I was carrying. We walked through the city center and got lost on a long walk through the rice terraces.
The heat was absolutely blinding and we ended up walking for probably at least 10 miles through rural Bali which was definitely an interesting experience. We also stumbled upon the beautiful Puri Saraswati Temple. It’s right off one of the main city roads and is such a gem to find with beautiful statues and lily pads that fill the water that surrounds the temple. Something else to check out in Ubud is the sprawling street market that runs through the town.
PS. make sure if you decide to enter any of the temples in Bali that you specifically bring a sarong and scarf to wear because they don’t accept pants or a regular maxi skirt! We learned the hard way.
So far, Bali has been an amazing experience with the friendliest people. I’m so excited for what the next week brings! Tomorrow we venture to Padangbai and then to the famous Pura Lempuyang Temple.
more to come,